Broadband Communities

NOV-DEC 2017

BROADBAND COMMUNITIES is the leading source of information on digital and broadband technologies for buildings and communities. Our editorial aims to accelerate the deployment of Fiber-To-The-Home and Fiber-To-The-Premises.

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72 | BROADBAND COMMUNITIES | www.broadbandcommunities.com | NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2017 ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT Finally, many economists say population itself attracts jobs. at's especially so for service jobs in retail, restaurants and medical facilities. e real estate industry is fond of saying that construction itself brings jobs. But in rural areas especially, few real estate developers would build large subdivisions on spec. So this effect is limited to fairly slow growth. Nor do rural residents believe that population increase causes job growth. Polling shows high antipathy toward immigrants, based on a belief that immigrant populations, rather than creating jobs, crowd out native-born Americans and depress wages. Others say jobs bring population. at would certainly be true for large industrial establishments. Locate a new automobile plant in a rural area, and its population will obviously grow. But those types of plants are uncommon. One thing is clear. Years ago, the Census Bureau calculated that as baby boomers age and die, all net population growth after 2021 will be due to immigration. Without population growth to pay for the next generation's Social Security and for the nation's defense needs, the country's best days may be over. at effect will be most severe in rural areas. v Editor-at-large Steve Ross can be reached at steve@bbcmag.com. Figure 1. The regression coefficient between population loss and income is 0.11 (top image, for counties in nonrestriction states) to 0.14 (lower image, for counties in restriction states) – a good result, considering uncertainties in the underlying data collected by the Census Bureau. This suggests that median income does rise with broadband access and fall with lack of access. Note that median household income is not strongly bimodal but is quite diverse, county to county. In these charts, note income where trend line crosses into positive population growth.

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